ASHEVILLE, N.C. – UNC Asheville pounded out a season-high 20 hits and scored a season-high 15 runs to down mountain rival Western Carolina 15-0 Wednesday night at McCormick Field.
Asheville also got stellar pitching on the night. Bulldog starter Corey Randall pitched the first six innings and scattered two hits to raise his record to 2-3. Dean Roland retired all six hitters he faced. Dillon Tabar pitched a scoreless ninth inning to give the Asheville its first shutout of the season.
The win snapped a frustrating eight-game losing streak for the Bulldogs (9-21). The Catamounts fell to 17-14.
“We finally put everything together tonight,” commented Bulldog coach Tom Smith. “Our guys had a great approach at the plate and did a super job hitting the ball. I can’t say enough about the great performance from Corey Randall. Western Carolina has a tough line-up from top-to-bottom and to limit them to two hits shows how well Corey pitched.”
Randall allowed just two hits, striking out two and walking one.
Tommy Houmard led the Asheville assault at the plate by going 4-for-5 with two RBI and two runs scored. Ian Graham added three hits and five RBI. Robert McIntosh finished with three hits and two RBI.
Asheville opened the scoring in the third inning. Hunter Bryant led off with a double before going to third on a Phillip Treadway single. Andrew Kirkland earned a walk to load the bases with nobody out.
Graham drove in the first run of the game on a sacrifice fly to center, scoring Bryant for a 1-0 lead. Houmard followed with a run-scoring double to push the lead to 2-0. McIntosh drove in the final run of the inning on a ground-out.
The Bulldogs padded the lead with seven runs to pad the lead in the fifth to lead, 10-0. With one out, Houmard singled. He went to third on a hit-and-run single to center-field by McIntosh. McIntosh moved to second on a wild pitch. Creighton squirted a single to left to score Houmard for a 4-0 Asheville lead.
Kyle Towles followed with a run-scoring double down the left-field line for a 5-0 margin. Todd Joyner drove in two runs with a single to center for a 7-0 lead. Treadway followed with an RBI-single for an 8-0 lead. Graham finished the uprising with a two-run single for a 10-0 margin.
Asheville put the game away in the seven with five more runs. Graham had a two-run single. Houmard had his second run-scoring double to push the lead to 13-0. McIntosh’s RBI-single made it 14-0. Creighton doubled in the final run of the game for the home team.
UNC Asheville opens a three-game series at Charlotte on Friday starting at 6 p.m. Western Carolina travels to Furman for a three-game Southern Conference series on Friday, also starting at 6 p.m.